MercadoLibre’s FinTech Unit Expands LATAM Credit Offerings

MercadoLibre Is Launching New Services To Compete In Competitive Market

Mercado Pago, a unit of Argentinian eCommerce platform MercadoLibre, is introducing new services to its app-based wallet users, in a move to stay competitive in an increasingly crowded market, according to a report by Reuters.

The new services will include money withdrawal and credit line options. Mercado Pago has over 220 million users through seven countries in Latin America, and it wants to grow its credit offerings to reach new customers outside of its normal sphere, according to Vice President Tulio Oliveira.

“Our customer today has a more credit-taking profile, and this is why we have been focusing more on credit solutions than investment ones in our digital wallet,” he said.

By September 2019, Mercado Pago had doled out $334.7 million in credit to sellers and about $84 million to consumers.

The company said it also wants to let customers withdraw cash using a QR code and introduce a credit and debit card business this year.

“We will gradually stop using services provided by other credit card acquiring firms as we fully operate our own,” Oliveira said.

Mercado Pago reached $7.6 billion in transactions in its third quarter, and $4 billion of that was not in MercadoLibre’s platform, which has never happened before.

Gabriela Szprinc, Mercado Pago’s director of payments, said the outfit wants to pass competitor PagSeguro Digital Ltd. in the number of card processing machines it has this year. Mercado Pago had 3.3 million processing machines in the month of September, and PagSeguro had 5 million.

At the end of December, Mercado Pago announced that it had added PayPal as a checkout option for its eCommerce marketplace. The deal will allow for Mercado Pago customers in Brazil and Mexico to use PayPal as a checkout option, and PayPal said the move could allow users to gain access to hundreds of thousands of new merchants. In early 2019, PayPal invested $750 million into Mercado Pago.